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Army November 21, 2013
IT HAS been 11 months and many
dead ends and I still do not have the
answers to my questions about the
retrospective awarding of the OSM.
Both myself and other colleagues
served on Op Relex in the early 2000s
and we have submitted the appropri-
We received an initial letter to say
that Honours and Awards has received
our submissions, however, it has now
been 11 months and still no news.
This would not concern me if it was
not the fact that the other services
have already been awarded the OSM.
Honours and Awards could not
tell me anything, simply saying it
has been handed back to Army and it
is up to the Service Chief to decide
when it is awarded.
I found this hard to believe, how-
ever, when I pressed further I was told
there is no way a soldier could contact
the relevant authority to find out what
was going on.
As soldiers who have met the
prerequisite, we are entitled to this
I find it frustrating that the Army
is more focused in other areas than
providing for the soldiers that provide
If it is the case that Army has
taken over the awarding of this medal
then I believe there has been a failure
in some department as this should not
take 12 months.
All soldiers are asking for is that
at the very minimum their PMkeyS is
updated to reflect their service.
Sgt Beau St Leone
DGPers-A Col Tony Hambleton responds:
DEFENCE has issued 110 Operational
Service Medals (OSM) for Border
Protection this year.
The Chief of Army has promulgated
OSM criteria reviewed
Army plans to have additional lists of eligible members submitted next year
Medal hold up: OSM applications are being processed but, due to the
number of members who are eligible it could take years.
guidance to all Army commands on
how Army will manage applications
for the OSM for border protection.
In reviewing those applications
that have come in it became apparent
that the evidentiary criteria in a large
portion of the applications did not
Therefore, a four-phased reme-
diation process has commenced to
review all operations logs pertaining
to border protection operations.
Army is working to remediate all
existing operations logs to establish
This is a lengthy process and
requires cross referencing several
source documents to determine
Army endeavours to have addi-
tional schedules of eligible members
submitted to the Governor-General
for approval by the end of June 2014.
To assist in identifying members
who have not had an operational log
entry raised for their border protec-
tion service, those members are
encouraged to submit an application
to the Directorate of Honours and
This application will then be for-
warded to the data remediation team
who will investigate each member's
There are issues with identifying
those members eligible where records
are either non-existent, archived or
incorrect for retrospective awards.
As a result, Army expects the pro-
cess of identifying all eligible mem-
bers to take a number of years.
Army understands that there is a
desire for eligible members to receive
their OSM as soon as possible, how-
ever, the organisation is committed
to ensuring that in matters affecting
awards, the integrity of the eligibility
criteria is maintained.
Going 'green' to replace lead ammo
IN THE process of drafting a user
requirement for an indoor range facil-
ity, I was surprised to learn that Army/
ADF appears to be reluctant to adopt
the use of so-called "green" ammuni-
tion; that is ammunition that does not
contain lead in either the jacketed pro-
jectile (lead metal) or the ammunition
primers (lead azide or lead styphnate).
Ammunition such as the US
M855A1 round is one of many green
ammunition types now widely avail-
able with negligible cost difference
to the current lead-based small arms
ammunition that the ADF uses.
Is now an appropriate time for our
ammunition procurement cycle to be
reviewed with a view to going "green"
with small-arms ammunition that the
Clearly, in going green we should
never compromise the reliability or
performance characteristics that our
ammunition natures demand.
If a suitable green ammunition
alternative can be adopted, it would
further reduce lead exposure to sol-
diers, reduce environmental lead con-
tamination in our training areas as
well as reduce costs and downtime
on firing ranges by eliminating the
requirement for regular de-leading
Capt Andrew Jackson
S7 Cell, HQ 13 Bde
Principal Ammunition Technical Officer
AHQ Lt-Col Chris Gates responds:
ARMY will continually review its use
of the most effective and appropriate
ammunition in meeting capability
requirements. These reviews will
always consider the impact of
ammunition remnants, such as lead,
on the environment.
Army is currently reviewing the
M855A1 as a possible replacement
for the current F1 5.56mm round and
has conducted significant testing in
Australia and the US to confirm the
effectiveness and interoperability of
the round in the current fleet of F88
The M855A1 round does not con-
tain lead and for that reason is con-
sidered to be "green" in minimising
The consideration of the M855A1
round is expected to be tabled in
I AM classed MWOD, however, I have a
daughter from my previous marriage that I
visit regularly and pay child support for.
Under my custody agreement I do not
meet the Pacman requirements to be classi-
fied as MWD.
I have custody for about 65 nights a year. I
pay for rent at two separate residences, one in
my posting locality in Toowoomba and one in
my daughter's locality in Brisbane. I do this
to save her having to travel long hours on the
road every second weekend.
I will be posted to Townsville at the end
of the year and visiting her will become both
difficult and expensive for flights and accom-
modation from Townsville to Brisbane and
my level of custody will in turn reduce.
I understand that it is a bit much to ask
that I receive all benefits as a MWD(U) mem-
ber, but if some of them could be afforded to
members like me, for example, the extra reun-
ion travel that is received. I have not come
across anything in Pacman for any entitle-
ments that may be afforded to me.
I have had this conversation with many
members in the same situation so is it time
for a new category to be implemented for
members in my situation to be provided with
allowances to keep relationships with their
Will all members' children be eligible for
ADF Family Health Program, or because the
member is MWOD will they be unable to
receive the same benefits the MWD families
will be receiving?
Cpl Daniel Nelson
DGPers-A Col Tony Hambleton responds:
THE Army has received a number of
enquiries with regard to benefits for members
with non-resident children.
The provision of specific financial benefits
to members with non-resident children from
previous relationships is a matter Personnel
Branch continues to monitor and advocate for.
This has recently been included by the
three Services as one of the priority policy
initiatives that needs to be addressed and
considered for funding.
Recognition of a child as a dependant (on
PMKeyS) is a prerequisite for participation in
the ADF Family Health Program.
If the days per year spent with your child
precludes you from the "non-discretionary"
categorisation of your child as a recognised
dependant, DGPERS-A has a specific
authorisation to address circumstances such
Individuals with circumstances such as
the example above are encouraged, through
their chain of command, to submit to
DGPERS-A an application for recognition of
your child as a dependant for conditions of
The ADF Family Health Program will
provide real and practical benefits for
Families are encouraged, where entitled,
to participate in this program.
Army members in these special
circumstances are encouraged to submit
documentary evidence to DGPers-A so
your own individual situation can be
ARMY welcomes letters
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letter published, please
Preference is given
to letters under 250
Letters may be
edited for space and
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Letters might be
rejected if they are too
long, abusive or can
be answered by the
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